I want to tell you about the 10 year journey I have just had to take to get to my goal that I’ve had since a kid.
Bit of background about my family and how I was bought up in Australia. On my mothers side of the family she was a civilian in the navy working for the Admiral of the Navy. Her grandfather (so my great grandfather) was an artilleryman in the Australian army during WW1 spending 4 years on the Western Front and came home to live to 92.
On my fathers side of the family, we are all extremely good marksman and hunters. My grandfather is a pistol champion of NSW. My cousin is also a London junior Olympics Gold medalist for double trap.
With families like this, I got bought up with a strict regimental upbringing and was taught and trained to shoot multiple firearms and outdoor survival skills. I always felt like I was raised to join the defence force and always loved the idea of it.
My 10 year journey started in my final year of school 2008. I was planning on joining the defence force. I was extremely good at athletics and specialised in shotput and discuss. Doing my last throw at shot put which I was already leading the school told me I was 15cm away from the record. Upon this I went a little harder and the shotput moved in my hand damaging the tendons in my wrist. Upon visiting the doctors and specialist I found out my army dreams were gone for now as I couldn’t even perform one push-up. They did however give me hope saying when it heals I can try out again.
I then got into selling cars after graduation and was doing this until the year 2014. This was the first year that I had felt back to my peak physical standard and could do all the exercises on my wrist with no brace or assistance. Knowing this, I went to my recruiting office in Canberra and started an application for the 2nd time.
I passed everything and was up to the final hurdle the Selection Board for Officer School when putting a bar back after doing dead lifts which I had done a thousand times my wrist let go again. I was in tears in the gym knowing what this had just cost me. Obviously, I couldn’t continue to join.
Years went by and I met my wife. She had two gorgeous kids from her first marriage and unfortunately not a nice ex partner. She was physically assaulted by him and the kids were so young when I met them. This took some time to rebuild and for her and the kids to feel safe but we now have a child of our own and the other two kids call me dad, not wanting to be near their real father.
When we found out my wife was pregnant our life went into a downward spiral. She had developed a seizure condition from when she was being assaulted and head damage that our growing baby almost killed her. He sent her seizures wild resulting in me having to perform CPR on her twice bringing her back. I had to take a lot of time off work and couldn’t hold down a job for long with what was going on at home. Eventually she gave birth early and Bub is perfectly fine and she is getting back on track.
Due to this stressful time, I did put on a lot of weight I got to 116kg which is 255lb. This is a massive change from my normally fit 88kg or 194lb. One day we were discussing the defence force and she said I should go back to try. We discussed how home life and the kids would be and I set out going about the process.
Now In June 2019, I have just passed all the fitness test and medical finished Officer Selection Board and am off to The Australian Royal Military College Duntroon in July to chase my dream.
I couldn’t of done it without my wife and just wanted to share this story letting people know that injuries are set backs and with the right never quit mindset we can achieve anything we want.
Thanks for the podcasts and the inspiration and keep on going.